Five Things Apple Needs to Improve Siri

Siri has been with us just over a year and although it has many virtues that earned him to become the main selling point of the iPhone 4S (at least in English-speaking countries where it was available), its performance is far from meeting the quality standards to which for so many years has spoiled the apple company.

Delays on promised dates for other languages, misleading advertising claims (in the U.S., where everything is possible, but still …), a beta sign that resists leave while all names associated with the project abandoned (by good or bad) the boat … Dag Kittlaus , Adam Cheyer or more recently the famous case of Scott Forstall . Finally, a soap opera. The Apple voice assistant can still become something great, but it needs to start by improving these five things …

Face it, the application of Google Search gives soups honda Siri as far as speed is concerned (and clearly if we design). Not that the Google search by voice is somewhat faster than the Apple wizard, no, is that it makes a mockery … and does so in the same phone and iOS version without leaving any excuse to cling.

Siri’s interface is not my cup of tea, but the representation of snacks is not at all incompatible with the real-time detection which boasts Google Search. Since we started talking, Siri is not just about listening, also translating our words, reflecting on the screen and even preparing cached possible answers to the most appropriate offer to the final judgment when we shut up. The same applies to the given function.

If we were talking about a small start up in Silicon Valley could understand, but Apple has one hundred billion dollars in their pockets and not using to build as many data centers are necessary for Siri not look like a rheumatic old is unforgivable.

2. Intelligence

Siri has learned a lot of new tricks in iOS 6 (including the ability to understand Spanish) and the beta of version 6.1 the list keeps growing . But not enough. Siri can do more for us, starting with bringing Spain (and other countries) some of the features already offered in the U.S. as schedules and movie reviews, restaurants reservation or knowledge base Wolfram Alpha.

Thereafter, and without stopping to ponder much, I can think of dozens of things I’d like Siri could do:read and answer my emails , read an ebook (with the correct intonation and all), keep an eye on my orders Amazon (or the constant stream of packets sent and received by courier), let me know of things that might interest me as important news or an event that is taking or will take place near my (a concert, a jam in my usual route …), as an interpreter or warn me of an important appointment even though I have not set your reminder (the birthday of my father for example).

Moreover, Siri has to constantly learn from my interactions with her ??. Remember my preferences in a natural way, understand my slang for the worst case you just have to repeat something the first time I heard it, etc.. Again, Apple, you have one hundred billion dollars and do not care if you buy WolframAlpha, OpenTable, Yelp (and FourSquare, please, which is far superior) to carry them everywhere and with the level you require. Thou hast put honey on my lips, now fulfill your responsibility.

3. Offline Operation

In an ideal world we would always have coverage, and connections would enjoy LTE in Spain and all would always open WiFi networks to connect with our iPad. But we do not live in an ideal world, and that Siri needs Internet connection to service a request as simple as “Play Nirvana” for music or “Open Angry Birds Star Wars ”to launch an app does not make sense .

Yes, I know it works Siri uses Nuance speech recognition but, come on, until the iPhone 3GS had voice commands before the arrival of iOS 5. I do not ask much, just the three microphones and processor A6 my iPhone 5 are used as God intended for more than just colors them out of competition. Here is the competition that is taking us and in a totally free.

4. API for developers

Sure it’s the first time I hear this. I thought to include it in the section make Siri smarter, but I think it is something that has enough clout to have their own point. Do you remember the original iPhone did not exist when the App Store and the only one who could get him was native applications for Apple itself?What a revolution occurred when developers could draw their own apps. But now imagine that once Apple opens Siri to these. The effect would be similar.

Interact with voice applications for a unique and easy to implement for its creators. Ensure that Siri is able to do all sorts of additional things with just installing a new app : upload photos to Instagram, YouTube video sharing network we feel like social (eg Myspace) SoundHound search for a song or voice control Plex. It makes my skin crawl.

5. Voice

When Apple launched Siri, he sounded surprisingly natural for what we were used to hearing in speech synthesis. But as we near 2013 and Google has shown us that there is room for improvement .Now Google’s voice is more human, sweet, and assuming that Siri will play an ever greater role in our everyday lives, the least we can ask is that we like his voice. So well, maybe even some shame to lose a bit of talking to a machine.

I have every confidence that some of these issues will be solved as soon as Eddy Cue, head of Internet software and services of Apple, finish the transition to his new responsibilities as head of Siri and maps after the departure of Scott Forstall. As for the API for developers, call me naive, but I’m pretty sure it will be (must be) one of the great new features of iOS 7.

 


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